The future of child care services in Cobar
is looking a lot brighter after Cobar Shire
Council officially took over the running of
the Kubby House Child Care long daycare
centre this week.
The service, which has previously been run
by a volunteer management committee, has
been struggling for some time to recruit parents
willing to fill the management roles.
The centre has also had problems on and off
trying to recruit suitably qualified staff to run
the centre, and for some time there has been a
long waiting list of families looking for childcare.
In November 2020 Kubby House’s outgoing
Management Committee wrote to Cobar Shire
Council and the local mines, proposing that as
the most prominent employers in town, it was
hoped that each business would nominate a
member of staff to hold an executive role on
This proposal was an attempt to secure the
stability of the committee, alleviate the burden
from parents, and provide the professional
expertise required to run a business – with the
nominated staff paid for their time, as opposed
to parents volunteering in their own time.
At the group’s annual general meeting in
December 2020, Peter Christen (CSA Mine
general manager) was elected as their new
president, with Rami Ghattas (Peak Gold
Mines) as vice president, Sandra Davey (Cobar
Shire Council) as treasurer and Kubby’s Administration
Officer Rachel Simon took on the
Two other parent volunteers were also elected
to the new general committee.
Mr Christen said following discussions with
Council in May this year to gain an understanding
of the government grants Council
received, the committee believed the best thing
for the Cobar community would be to have a
single child care facility that had the support of
both local and state government bodies.
Councillors also supported the idea and instructed
Mayor Peter Abbott and General Manager
Peter Vlatko to work with the committee
and proceed with the transfer.
Mr Christen said it had been a pleasure working
with Council who already had plans in
place to build a brand new early learning centre
to meet the growing needs of the community.
“I really appreciate them being proactive
looking forward and I think they’ll do a good
job of it,” Mr Christen said.
“Taking the early approach to working with
this instead of waiting for the facility to arise
shows their commitment.”
Mr Vlatko said the transfer notification was
lodged with the Department of Education in
“The process to transfer approved provider
status of a childcare centre was relatively
straight forward for Council because we are
already the approved provider for other services
(Family Day Care and Louth preschool),”
Mr Vlatko said.
He said there may be some “teething issues”
during the transfer process, buthe hopes parents
will see improvements in the coming months.
“Council will provide the support of a larger
organisation, have a business-focused approach
to the running of the service and, while long
day care is not our core business, we do already
manage other local children’s services
(COOSH, FDC, In-Home Care, Louth Preschool)
and can take that knowledge and experience
into this new venture,” Mr Vlatko said.
The move to being a Council-run facility will
also be advantageous to staff with all existing
staff to transfer their employment to Council
where they will benefit from higher wages
offered under the Local Government Award.
Council’s new early learning centre, which is
to be located at Ward Oval, will have the capacity
to accommodate up to 88 children and is
expected to be open for business early 2023.